The Swedish government takes today’s decision by the Supreme Court in Cambodia to dissolve the leading opposition party, Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) very seriously. CNRP received 43.8% of the votes in the 2017 local elections. Recent repressive action against the opposition, media and civil society organizations is a serious backlash for democratic development and human rights in Cambodia, said a statement on 17 November.
Sweden and the EU have previously remarked on the political development that we consider to be severely restricting the democratic space before Cambodia goes to parliamentary elections in the summer of 2018. Free and fair elections are one of the cornerstones of democracy. An election where the main opposition party is not allowed to participate will not be considered legitimate.
The government calls on Cambodia to allow the political opposition, media and civil society actors to work freely.
In light of the negative political developments, the government will review the forms for our commitment to Cambodia, ended the statement.